29 February 2012

March Featured Screen of the Month

Okay, I'm fully aware that today is not March. But I'm excited about this new design and I want to get this post up because tomorrow is when I get to spill the beans about my secret project and I don't want this post to get lost in the shuffle.

BUT, since I don't want to jip the February Featured Screen of the Month - because let's be honest, its all kinds of groovy - and since February is short by a couple of days, that design is going to stay up in the shop for an extra week. 

Please allow me to introduce you to the March Featured Screen of the Month, "Bounce":

This energetic design is brought to you by the super talented Lesley Riley. Isn't it awesome? Its so full of life and fun! :) The perfect antidote to the blahs of the winter months.

Here, take another look:

I've got visions of making a laptop pillow with this, I'll post a quick tutorial on how to do that next week so you can make one too. (All I can think about when I look at this is bouncy, bouncy bouncy!!!)

Lesley is a very talented mixed media artist, working in both art quilts and books. She's well known for using image transfers in her work and created TAP - Transfer Artist Paper.  She's also an author and a wonderful instructor - Lesley taught a mixed media class in Houston at the International Quilt Festival several years ago and it was the first mixed media class I ever took. I fell madly in love and came away truly inspired! :)

And if all that isn't enough, she's also the founder of Artist Success. She offers coaching to help you along in your creative endeavors. And after all the things that she's accomplished, she really knows what she is talking about.

Its truly an honor to have her design a screen for the shop - she's a never ending source of inspiration! I hope you like it too and don't wait to pick it up because its only available for the month of March!! :)

28 February 2012

publishing news - spring 2012 Studios & a giveaway :)

The Spring 2012 issue of Studios magazine is out (don't you love the word Spring?):

I'm really excited to make my second appearance in this publication. But instead of looking at my studio this time, I attempt to ensnare you in my organization addiction by making these nifty fellows:

Its well documented on the blog how I love a good organizer. I guess it was only a matter of time before I started making my own. These are super easy, not too expensive and you can customize the heck out of them - all things we like, right? :)

I'm a huge fan of this publication, I love seeing inside other people's studios and this issue doesn't disappoint. I've got an extra copy that I'd love to pass on so leave a comment on this post and I'll announce a winner on Sunday. (Please note, if you don't leave a way for me to get into contact with you either through an email address or another blog, I can't include you in the drawing.)

Good luck! :)

27 February 2012

early artwork up for grabs

My cleaning quest is soldering on despite a wicked to-do list. Cleaning often calms my nerves, nothing like feeling like you have complete control when you decide what stays and what goes.

Well, this is one thing that I've decided needs a new home:

Beads & Things
23" x 23"
Lynn Krawczyk
$65 (includes flat rate priority mailing in U.S.)

I made that back in 2006 when I was approached by Leisure Arts to create something for a book they were working on then. (I guess publishing has been something I've gravitated to since the beginning of my fiber art career.)

This piece was published in the Beginner's Guide to Art Quilts:

Which is a quite fine book by the way. Even six years later, its a great place to start if you're new to art quilts.

I love this quilt. But my style has evolved and rather then tucking it back into the closet where its been stored, I'd love to see it go to a new home so it can be hung by someone who loves it as much as I do. Its got a sleeve on the back so all you need is a rod and its ready to go.

So here's the deal:

Email me at FibraArtysta@earthlink.net if you want it. Its $65 and that includes priority flat rate shipping. Sorry, on this one I'm only shipping to the U.S.

Hope it finds a new home! :)

26 February 2012

where i stand sunday

In my studio.

The rest of the world ceases to exist.

Its me and the creative force, working in companionship, seeking to bring things into being.

No where else can I feel sunken into my purpose, my calling.

Where I Stand is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing. Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on. The ground we tread on has its own stories to tell. 

22 February 2012

what would you create with a fat eighth of fabric?

That's the question I posted on my Facebook wall several weeks ago. It was kind of a sneaky inquiry because I was getting ready to list my hand printed fabric in my shop.

See, I can make a fat eighth of fabric (that's a piece of fabric that measures about 9" x 22" in case you weren't sure what I'm going on about) go a super long way. But that's me. I like to break fabric down into little tiny bits and collage them together.

So what would people who don't do that, who make larger projects, think of a fat eighth?

All I have to say is that you are all an imaginative bunch. :)

Here are two projects that came from fat eighths from the shop:

That there is a Peculiar Poppet from Kate's Huggable Art Plushies.  As soon as Kate saw the orange fabric she blurted out "Steampunk!" I thought maybe it was just a twitch but this is what she brought me and now I understand! :)

I'm addicted to Kate's Peculiar Poppets and I think this fellow is just fabulous. The orange fabric took on such a wonderful life with this creation, so cool, don't you think??

Patrice also piped up at the question and her choice was to make her technology friend a swanky cover:

She hand stitched the snot out of a piece of the grey and white fabric. Added a bit from her stash for punch and now her iPad is all stylish. (I drooled, I'm not ashamed to say it.)

I'm  happy to see that such a small amount of fabric can still be the life of the party.

So tell me - what would you create with a fat eight of fabric? :)

20 February 2012

scattered studio weekend

My habit on the weekend is to normally take a large chunk of one day and hibernate in the studio. It doesn't really sound like it would be enough time to get a lot done but when you've got wicked focus and deadlines breathing down your neck, its the best way to work.

But this weekend was really scattered. There is much on my mind and I don't know if that had anything to do with it or if its just the lingering cooties that never seem to tire of me. (Mild winter weather = bizarre sinus issues.)

Add to all that the fact that my projects this weekend were kind of secret (but only for about another month and then I can shout it from the mountain tops, I'm excited and I think you will be to!) and it makes my studio doings post for this week a bit anemic.

Ah well, maybe I can distract you with pretty colors.

I found a new source for hand dyed threads, take a look at these variegated beauties:

I picked those up from Dyed Fiber on etsy. I have a project planned for them and they are even more impressive in person. :)

I did a bunch on hand stitching:

This is going on to a Remnant Collage for the April show. Its going to get a little bit of surface design (you didn't think I'd be able to leave something paint free, did you?) and then I'll put it in place. Its a fairly small piece of fabric and it was nice to have to just stitch on when there was a few seconds, very calming too.

I think I'm going to toss some scraps into a small ziploc bag along with some thread and just drag it around in my purse. Kind of like a fiber prozac for all those irritating bits of the day. ;-)

And then there were all the secret projects. Printing and stitching and plotting:

Pretty colors, right? More soon, I don't like the secret project thing much, I've gotten so used to sharing! Ah well, with the way time flies it won't be secret for long. :)


19 February 2012

where i stand sunday

Its our evening ritual. He peeks his head over the edge of the sofa and shyly asks to come up. He snuggles against my leg, resting against me with a deep sigh. He counts me amongst his own, a kind of sweet possessiveness that is fitting, that is contentment.

Where I Stand is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing. Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on. The ground we tread on has its own stories to tell. 

16 February 2012

doing the work

I posted this on my facebook page, its one of my favorite quotes about creativity. So true. So perfect.

14 February 2012

Foto/Fiber ACS Fundraiser 2012 :)

Its nearly here!!!! :)

Artist and fundraising genius Virginia Spiegel is about to launch the 2012 Fiberart for a Cause fundraiser. I've talked about it before on the blog so I'll just do a quick recap here but I wanted to put up a big celebratory reminder because it begins tomorrow!

Here's the nitty gritty of how it works:

On February 15th, make a minimum donation of $100 to the American Cancer Society and choose from one of 90 beautiful photos and dozens of Fiber Bonuses provided by 39 artists (including me).

On February 16th, make a minimum donation of $50 to the American Cancer Society and choose from one of 90 beautiful photos and a Fiber Bonus will be randomly selected for you.

Photos and Fiber Bonuses are on a first come first serve basis so don't wait too long to donate to get a chance to choose. What is a Fiber Bonus you ask?

Some fiber goodness that can include supplies and all things wonderful. Want to see my contributions? Here they are:

That's three separate Fiber Bonuses. Each one has a 4" square Remnant Collage and a fat eighth of my hand printed fabric.

I'm also contributing a piece of artwork, Remnant Collage 4:

If you donate at least $100 over the course of the fundraiser, you'll go into a drawing to win this piece.

This is a really exciting event - so much generosity and so much good karma flying about - I'm SUPER excited and I hope you are too!

Don't forget that the the fundraiser runs on February 15 and February 16. Visit Virginia's page here to learn how to participate and many many thanks in advance!! :)

13 February 2012

a sleepy weekend

This weekend was a weekend of rest. I tend to run at full speed and occasionally my body puts up a huge protest and I find myself faced with the choice of taking a couple of days to rest or pushing it to a point that will drive me into a kind of exhausted sickness.

So I chose to rest this weekend. Not really something I'm good at. I watched this on Netflix (I'm totally fascinated by Mt. Everest things) and read through some magazines and cuddled the westie. (Dooley feels that I should behave this way every weekend, he enjoyed the extended snuggles and naps we had.)

Wanting something simple to do, I found myself thinking about something I had seen on Pinterest. I came across this from the Naturally Dyeing blog. Once I stopped hyperventilating over the colors (and yes, I checked, she's not selling these), I was able to focus on the very nifty way she wrapped the thread around wood clothes pins.

I've been on a slow meticulous cleaning and sorting and organizing quest since early December. I sat down and decided that I know what kind of artist I am now so all the extra things I don't need anymore can go to new homes. But I decided to take it slow and just go through things at my own pace.

I'm a hand embroidery / sewing thread nut and came across a small bag with a bunch of DMC wool thread I had bought who-knows-when. (This is why I am cleaning. In a way its like an adventure, I'm finding "new" things I had long forgotten about.) I decided to give the clothes pin holder trick a try with them:

 I'm in loooooooooooooovvvvvveeeee...

I think this is a genius way to organize hand embroidery/sewing threads. I have several packages of the wood clothes pins from the dollar store (so its an affordable method too) and I'm going to just chip away at it as I go. Slow and steady seems to be my motto this year. :)

By the way, I'm always on the lookout for new thread sources so if you have a favorite, let me know in the comments! :)

10 February 2012

destruct-o box experiment update 2

Well, its been nearly a month since the last update I posted.

We got a whole lot of nothin' to report. Zip. Zero. Nada. (I swear I'm not re-posting the same photo over and over again.)

Please note the incredibly out-of-place green grass in the background. I expect that is the thing that is allowing the box to remain unchanged.

It makes me kind of twitchy. I'm considering burying it. Duct tape it to the inside of a trash can. Smear peanut butter on it and throw it in a pen with puppies. Anything to cause some kind of change to it.

*sigh* I guess I had hoped for something more dramatic. Instead its as exciting as reading the tax law.

I may have to take more drastic measures....

07 February 2012

snuggly prize! :)

I love doing giveaways on my blog and I'm not alone - there are tons of super talented people giving away their awesome products.

The fabulous crochet designer, Diana of Anaid Designs, had one over at her blog. I got super excited because a couple of months ago I purchased one of her crochet rugs for my bedroom. I adore it - soft and warm and super squishy. So nice to wake up and walk across first thing each morning. :)

Imagine my delight when I won the giveaway on her blog for one of her hooded crochet cowls! Hooray!

We've had a really mild winter but for those of you not from this area of the country, we're calling 32 degrees really mild. Still cold. Even colder if we get one of those obnoxious windy days.

I'll still be dressing in layers until April and now I can do it with some serious style! :) I really love the blue and grey yarn she used, so so soft too. I think crochet has a bad rap to some extent as being a stiff piece of platic-y craft. SO untrue and Diana really proves it. This cowl has beautiful drape and I can drag it up over my head like a hood on the less pleasant days. It will get tons of use!

If cowls don't strike your fancy, no worries. Tons of other great things there - hats, scarves, rugs, ipad cozies. She's a crochet genius. :)

And just to prove her awesomeness even more, Diana is offering all you wonderful folks a 15% off discount! You've got until Feb 14th to use the code.

Just go visit her shop and at checkout enter the code JUST4ME and the discount will come off straight away.

I'm sure you'll find something there that you love and she's super nice and easy to work with. Get some crochet love for yourself! :)

06 February 2012

from the studio

I made sure I had some solid studio time this weekend. An offer I couldn't refuse (and yes, I do love the movie that made that quote famous) landed in my lap which means I need to get off my behind and move a bit quicker on some things. (More details shortly on what the project is since it will be revealed in a few weeks, I couldn't be more excited about it!)

My goal for this weekend was to get every single piece for the April show underway. That meant I had to conquer the bases of both Beasts and one smaller piece that comes in at 20"x20".

But first, I had to deal with this:

You'd think I'd be embarrassed to show you that but I know you understand. I'm still waiting for someone to start a studio cleaning service, I'd probably keep them on retainer.

Half an hour later I had this (and no, I didn't toss everything on the ground to get a clean picture, although I was tempted):

I discovered something amazing once things were tidied. I could put Beast #1 up on the table to work:

 It hangs off the edge but who cares? My back rejoiced, no weird contorted floor crawl was necessary.

Incredible what happens when we clean, isn't it? ;-)

Didn't take long to complete the background on this one:

(Sorry to make you deal with the lousy photos, was too tired to shove things around to get better ones.)

Spurred by being able to stand to work on these larger pieces, I tackled the background for Beast #2 as well:

After finishing Beast #1, I wanted to see if how it would look if I used smaller pieces of fabric like I do on my littler canvases. I thought I might like the effect better.

I can't say I prefer it, I like the way both came out. I still have to do more to these but this is the time consuming part. The rest of it can be picked away at a little bit each day and I'm going to make an effort to do that no matter how tired I am. Sometimes its better for me to work when I'm tired, I just do. I don't think as hard.

After those two, the 20" x 20" was cake:

So now all the backgrounds are done. I've got some decision to make as to how far I want the other layers to go. There is part of me that feels like these are mostly done but I love layers so much, I know that these can be much richer and more complicated. Which is most likely where I will end up taking them.

Can't wait to break out the paints! :)

05 February 2012

where i stand sunday

Its out of place, this scene. Where thick white snow and ice should exist, I see a perpetual autumn trapped like a polaroid that someone forgot to shake out all the way. I'm drunk on the colors of the landscape, rich with muddy tired tones that whisper ideas to me.

Where I Stand is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing. Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on. The ground we tread on has its own stories to tell. 

04 February 2012

maybe its just that simple

I've been thinking more and more about what I said in this post.

I can't say that I've had an epiphany about my work, nothing that dramatic. But I can say this: when I knew what I wanted from my art, everything felt easier, clearer.

Maybe its just that simple.

Maybe if we go into the studio with purpose and intention, our inspiration/muse/creative self is inspired as well. It becomes a session of teamwork instead of working alone.

01 February 2012

February Featured Screen of the Month

Well, here we are! Already on to our second Featured Screen of the Month! :)

If you missed the explanation of this exciting new category of screens for the shop, you can read the full details here.

Here's the short version of it: every month, a new screen will go up in the Featured Screen of the Month category. Its only available for that month and its by a truly fantastic artist that you all know and love.

I'm SUPER excited to announce that the February Featured Screen of the Month (FSOTM) is from the extremely talented artist Jo James of Cart Before the Horse!

If you're new to Jo's art, please be sure to stop by her blog and give her a big wave. Her wit and passion come through in every piece she creates, creating a small army of happy to send out into the world.

For the February FSOTM, she is sharing some of her hand drawn characters in little oval formats that could be used for all sorts of charming projects. I'm happy to present "Petite Portraits":

Each one measures around 3" high by 2.5" wide.

If you want one for your very own - and you know you do - swing by the shop and pick one up while they are available! :)

Here is the line up for future months -great stuff, huh? :)

March Featured Screen of the Month
* * *
April Featured Screen of the Month
* * *
May Featured Screen of the Month
* * *
June Featured Screen of the Month
* * *
July Featured Screen of the Month
* * *
August Featured Screen of the Month
* * *
September Featured Screen of the Month
* * *
October Featured Screen of the Month
* * *
November Featured Screen of the Month